You are my Knoxy

“You are my Knoxy, my only Knoxy. You make me happy when skies are grey. You’ll never know, dear, how much I love you. Please don’t take my Knoxy away.”

Happy birthday my sweet second son! September 26… your special day, which is my special day, too. Because being your mom and celebrating your birthday year after year is a particular privilege I don’t take for granted. Not because I ever doubted your resilience or viability, but because for a while I wondered if I would be here to watch you grow up. But here I am, three years after you entered my life, and I’m not only watching you grow up, but I’m growing up with you.

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Every day you teach me something new about being a mom: how to parent you in a way that works with your beautiful and special personality (which is so, so different than your big brother’s beautiful and special personality). You make me brave; you make me prayerful; you make me laugh; you make me think; you help me to be tender; you help me to play hard. Parents often think that our life calling is to shape our little ones into independent admirable adults, but I’m reminded often that parenting you & Navy is actually shaping me into the woman that God is continually working on.

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You are the life of the party, Knox. You light up a room. You come into a space and people smile because you bring joy with you like Linus brings his blankie. Speaking of blankies, you still love your dear Bubba, even in spite of the fact you have removed all of his stuffing and he is threadbare and worn. You love hard, it would seem. And you care deeply. You know when I need a kiss or a cuddle (a trait I have observed in many second-born children, and love sharing with you). Bubba is your buddy, and that makes you MY Bubba, which is why it has become a common moniker for you during our most intimate conversations, just Mommy and Knox.

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I can’t wait to see you become a big brother next month. To see you grow in tenderness and affection and to see you no longer be the baby of our family. I know that the second your baby brother or sister is in your arms, you will instantly look older and heartbreakingly mature to me. I remember it as one of the most bittersweet moments of bringing a new life into the world; seeing the older sibling, no longer the baby, immediately putting on this role of “Big” in the house. We hoped and prayed your baby brother or sister would come many months sooner than it ended up happening, but as I watch you, I can see that God’s plan was much better than ours and that you are going to be a much better prepared brother now that you’re a big 3 year old boy and we’ve had all those extra months with you as our baby boy.

Every morning before school, I tell you to be a leader and to shine your light. Knox, your light is so bright. You are known and you are noticed. Take that and use it for good, baby boy big boy. You are a beacon in a dark world; you make people smile when they want to frown; you have Jesus in your heart and you were placed on this Earth to share that with others. Use every bit of your big, dynamic, beautiful self to shine. I love you more.

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Happy Birthday.

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